Sunday, October 26, 2003

Husband Michael to Do Some Image-Polishing

Watch out! Terri's husband, Michael Schiavo, is going to be making the rounds of the national press during the next week. The purpose of this is to portray Michael as and reinforce his image as the victim of unfair attacks, and as being solely motivated by his deep care for Terri and his desire to carry out her wishes to be killed.

The first stop of this train will be his appearance on Monday night's "Larry King Live" show. Larry King is slotted to have Michael on for a full hour, unopposed by anyone from the Schindler family. I think that I can safely predict that this will be a virtual love-fest between Michael and Larry. No similar invitation has been extended to the Schindlers, which seems to me to demonstrate where he is coming from regarding Terri. And, as the Most Intellectually Dishonest Media Personality In America Today [TM], he can be counted on to ask only fawning softball questions of Michael.

Michael has claimed to be in hiding due to death threats against him. This claim is almost certainly part of his effort to acquire a more sympathetic image. For a man in hiding, he is acting mighty peculiar: He has been seen in the last 24 hours at a local shopping mall and restaurant.

You can also expect, now that the ACLU and Euthanasia organizations have pledged to enter the fray on Michael's behalf, that the drumbeat portraying him as a victim and noble-minded humanitarian will only increase. They want to cast Terri's case as a "right to die" issue. To do that they will do everything in their power to portray Michael as the heroic figure, challenging us narrow-minded extermists who want to interfere with his "rights".

Michael's attorney, George Felos, has a well known affinity for the pro-Euthanasia movement. This movement's adherents have a fascination, one might almost say a fetish, with Death. They seek to widen the acceptable boundaries within which society will find death acceptable. To forestall that effort, we must be vigilant against their attempts to coopt the language of rights and compassion.